Main menu


- Advertisement -

Classic French Madeleines

Classic French Madeleines

Madeleines, Also known as French butter cakes, hailing from France, are delightful petite sponge cakes that boast a distinctive shell-like appearance. These delectable treats are prepared using a blend of simple ingredients, including butter, sugar, eggs, and flour. The magic of madeleines lies in their exquisite balance of textures – a delicately crisp exterior encases a soft, tender interior. Traditionally baked in specialized madeleine molds, these little delights carry a subtle yet enchanting flavor profile, often featuring a hint of buttery richness combined with a touch of citrus, commonly lemon.

The unique shape of butter madeleines is achieved through the use of the iconic shell-shaped molds, which contribute to their aesthetic charm. The baking process results in a golden brown exterior that provides a satisfying crunch upon the first bite, while the inner crumb remains wonderfully moist and fluffy. 

This delightful combination has made french madeleines a timeless favorite, frequently enjoyed as a sweet indulgence accompanying a leisurely afternoon tea or coffee. Whether served plain or adorned with a dusting of powdered sugar, madeleines offer a delightful sensory experience that captures the essence of French pastry craftsmanship.

These Classic French Madeleines are light, fluffy, and so good with french milk bread and a cup of tea!

Are madeleines Cookies or Cakes?

Technically, madeleines (or petite madeleines) are small butter cakes. However, because of their shape and size they’re often referred to as cookies. Truthfully they’re mostly like a cross between the two desserts (and who could ask for a better hybrid?). They’re a bit more dense than your average cake recipe, but much, much lighter and fluffier than any cookie.

Madeleines Ingredients


1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, melted until browned

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 and 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest, finely grated

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 and 1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 large eggs, at room temperature

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup confectioners sugar, sifted, optional

Madeleines Instructions


Cut the butter in tablespoons and place them in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. 

Once the butter has melted, reduce the heat to low and continue cooking, until the solids sink to the bottom of the pan and turn golden brown, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and pour the browned butter into a small bowl. Stir the vanilla and lemon zest into the butter, then set aside to cool.

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside until needed.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs at medium speed while gradually adding the sugar. Once all of the sugar has been added, increase the speed to medium-high and continue whipping the mixture until it's very thick and pale in color, about 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the mixer off and, using a silicon spatula, fold in the flour mixture in three additions, stirring just until combined. Fold in the butter mixture.

Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, and up to 2 days.

30 minutes before you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 degrees (F). Generously brush the molds of your madeleine pan with butter, then lightly dust with flour.

Using a medium cookie scoop, spoon level scoops of the batter into the center of each mold. You don't need to spread the batter.

Bake for 12 minutes, or until the "bellies" have risen and they're golden brown.

Cool madeleines in the pan placed on a cooling rack for a minute or two, then gently loosen them from the molds. If they stick, carefully run a small knife around the edge of the cakes until they release.

Dust with confectioners' sugar and serve warm, with coffee or tea.

Chech out this : Soft Butter Sponge Cake 

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -